Tag: Platforms

Using Windows 8 for Creating Apps

Deciding to give it a try, I downloaded Windows 8 to my personal laptop.  I then ran the update that promised to keep all of my files and settings intact and held my breath.  Thankfully, it turned out to be the smoothest Windows upgrade I’ve done to date. Then, the real fun began when I […]

Client-side Image Composition with HTML5

As Constant Contact produces more and more video content, we’ve started to run into some unlikely bottlenecks in the video creation process. One of the big ones turns out to be the creation of preview thumbnails, which requires compositing a play button over a frame of video and saving out the resulting image. This simple, […]

Concurrency Insights from Web Server Technologies

As we explore the scaling of Web applications in many dimensions (number of users, size of data, UI functionality, and more), there are various challenges, many subtle and surprising.  Some of the thorniest arise from the high latency of communications over the Internet, which generally leads to designs supporting greater concurrency. Hardware advances have helped: […]

Applying Data Mining Techniques to MapReduce

Here at the Labs, we have been playing around with the MapReduce programming model (namely the open-source Hadoop implementation) for a while, but have been relatively conservative up till now. Most of the jobs that we have done thus far have been relatively simplistic, being more or less basic aggregation functions, with the most difficult […]

Rails vs Django: A Developer’s Comparison

As you might know from reading some of my previous blog posts, I’ve been working with Python and Django pretty extensively over the last year, mainly for rapid prototyping and developing relatively simple web applications (including a Facebook App). During Cool Stuff Week I decided to try using Ruby on Rails (RoR) as the base […]